How to write Telnet output to file

Written by stephen byron cooper Google
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How to write Telnet output to file
Telnet allows you to log in to remote computers. (Goodshoot/Goodshoot/Getty Images)

Telnet is a network utility that enables you to log in to a remote computer and issue commands there through Telnet’s environment. The interactive nature of the utility means that it is not possible to redirect output to a file -- you would not be able to see any prompts. However, Telnet includes a log file option that will record all the output of your Telnet session.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Open a Command Prompt Window. Click on the Start button, move the pointer to “All Programs” and then hover over “Accessories” click on “Command Prompt” in the Accessories sub-menu. In the Command Prompt change to the directory where you would like to save the log file. For example “CD My*” will take you to the My Documents folder.

  2. 2

    Start a Telnet session by typing “telnet” (without the quotes) at the command prompt. The command prompt will change from the showing the current directory to a prompt that shows “Microsoft Telnet>.” This confirms that you are now in the Telnet environment. You can type “?” to get a list of commands.

  3. 3

    Create a log file. In this example, the log file is called “log.txt”: type “set logfile log.txt” and press return. The log file will only record activity while you are connected to another computer. Conventionally, you need to enter an IP address. However, a web address will do just as well. If you don’t know a Telnet site to which to connect you can select one from the Synchro Net directory (see Resources).

  4. 4

    Connect to a site with the “open” command, which can also be abbreviated to “o”. For example, to connect to the Fatcats Bulletin Board, type “o” and press return. After exploring the site you visit, exit that and then leave Telnet with the “quit” command, which can be abbreviated to “q”

  5. 5

    Close the Command Prompt window by typing “exit” and press return. You can now go to the directory where you saved the log file in Windows Explorer. The file will be in plain text format.

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